Category: hip

15…point….1 and DONE!

I know. Y’all are just dying to know how I did on 15.1.

But first a diversion. You knew this was coming…

Why in the hell am I so down on myself? I walked away from 15.1, quite frankly, pissed off at myself. Walked in the door and my wife said I looked like I’d driven an hour+ to the gym only to find it closed. I was pissed. Didn’t perform to expectations. Then I cracked open a Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter (ABV 11.2%, roughly) and thought a bit.

I’ve made improvements and done some cool stuff, but I’ve been injured somewhat-seriously for 2 freakin’ years. Shoulder surgery was August 2013 and was preceded by 6 or so months of PT, doctor’s visits, MRI’s, and pain. When I finally felt whole after surgery I slid over into hip surgery. That was only 5 1/2 months ago. This ain’t a pity party. It’s somewhat of a realization that I haven’t been 100% for a while now. I’ve still been able to do really cool stuff; first crossift comp, broke 400 in the deadlift, hit top 25% in my age group in the Open last year, but I’m always down on myself for not performing better. That’s kinda dumb really. Add to that I’m back in an executive position at a startup, and life is totally and completely nuts. Time to get real about expectations.

So I looked at 15.1 as another WOD. I didn’t know if I would be able to get 3 or 4 rounds, or maybe only 2 rounds. In the warmup it dawned on me that I haven’t snatched since last August. Haven’t cleaned for a while, and definitely haven’t done anything close to a heavy jerk. Haven’t squatted over 75#’s since, well, September – early September. I did a few bare bar snatches. They felt unwieldy. Just not used to the movement.

From a 45# bar, we loaded 35’s to get to the 115# Rx weight, and I snatched that. Thank goodness this wasn’t a squat snatch WOD. 115# felt like crap. I got it up, but it was fugly. Left shoulder was a shooting pain. Nice.

Judged for Sam who went first. He did well. 5+ rounds and up to a 241# clean.

My turn. Screw it. Pulled out the Inov-8 Oly shoes for the first time since…. September. Have felt too much like a poser to put them on lately. Plus you don’t need Oly shoes when squatting 75#’s.

No offense intended. Sam is a really good guy, but when he said, “are you sure you want Rx weight?” I kinda wanted to give him a bit of advice… Instead I just said, “Yep,” nodded my head, and took a deep cleansing breath.

Round 1 – Toes-to-Bar. Got the first one easy and…totally couldn’t string them. When I’m on I can string 10 T2B pretty easily. Today? Nothing. Was doing that nasty double kip with a major bottom pause. Switched to a lower bar next to me and started doing singles. Got it done.

Deads? 115# deads? Please.

Then the snatches. That was nasty. Looked like a total newbie. My snatch PR is a sucky 155#, but 115# felt like it was over 200#’s. Had to take  second to clear my head. Sam was giving good coaching advice, but my body is not in position to do put that wisdom into practice. By the 4th rep I was feeling almost OK about the snatch. They were a nasty muscle/power snatch combo, but they were getting done.

Round 2 – got it done. Sometime in these snatches Sam said, “just go Shoulder-to-Overhead. Keep it moving.” Uhhhh, no. Hell no! I’ve got the Rx weight, and I’m going to Rx this WOD. Honestly, it was the right advice, but I’m not smart enough to listen.

No repped myself twice for not touching the bar on the ground between deadlifts. Gots to be legit.

Round 3, them snatches were HEAVY. Into Round 4 I had a minute or so on the clock. Did no-rest toes-to-bar singles. I really wanted to finish that set, and I did.

Back to the deadlifts with maybe 35 seconds on the clock, and I, no bullshit, hammered them out. Score: 115, 3 rounds + 25 reps.

That’s pretty solid for not knowing where I would go. I was tired, but it wasn’t role on the floor tired. I can’t even get into that pain cave with the shape I’m in. Yeah, “get in shape so you REALLY suffer…”

Then 15.1A

The trick is to use 1/2 pound plates to get a single pound on the competition. Sam had them, but some guy had taken them from the pile when I was tying my shoes. What the fuck???? Who takes your weights during a WOD?

Yeah, I expressed my dissatisfaction to him afterwards. He mentioned that he did ask and got permission. I then pointed out that it is better to get permission FROM THE PERSON WHO IS ACTUALLY LIFTING!!!

Coach found 1/4# discs for me quite quickly. Nice. A little adder.

Started at 135.5#’s for a solid opener. Easy.

I forget my exact progression, but my 3rd lift was at 180.5. Folks, I’m barely even power cleaning these reps because I don’t have confidence in my hip. Cleaned the 180.5, which is more than I’ve cleaned in a long time. Then I let my head get in the way and barely got any height on the bar during my jerk.

Still had a couple of minutes left. Trust me folks. You can get 4 solid lifts in. Don’t rush it. And don’t even start your first lift until AT LEAST a minute in. You need to calm down from the MetCon.

I took my time. I chalked up. I tried to breathe. Then I went back to the bar.

Muscle cleaned it. Paused. Took a deep breath. Dipped and … did something. Fugly, fugly, fugly. That was NOT a split jerk. My feet were maybe 6″ apart (back to front), and I push pressed that 180.5# overhead to lockout.

Seeing as how my 1RM C&J is 185… I’m pretty stoked about hitting 180-and change with no strength training to speak of, and I’ve missed a lot of workouts lately.

Also, seeing as how my strict press is only 155, I’m pretty sure I could improve on that too. 180.5#’s, on a 4th heavy lift, and after a met con? Dude, my PR’s clearly have a LOT of headroom.

TL:DR – I came home, paid my $20, signed up for the Open, and entered my score.

Yes, I can do the WODs and get a score. It’s a crap score, but it’s a score.

I’ll take it.

I won’t get top 25% this year, but I’ll get scores. Maybe I’ll quit beating myself up too. Stranger things have happened.

I didn’t get hip surgery so I could sit on my ass.

Major down day for non-fitness reasons. Writing up a conversation from a while back to lighten the mood. Well, lighten my mood….and it’s my blog… 😉

Office conversation not that long ago

Colleague: “Did you have your hip replaced?”
Me: “No. Arthroscopic surgery. Had some bone shaved off and they pulled out a bunch of floating cartilage.”
C: “So you’ll recover sooner than with hip surgery?”
Me: “I actually think a new hip would be faster, but it would also be metal in my body and all that. This long recovery kinda stinks really.”
C: “Well at least you don’t have to go back to all that squatting stuff again.”
M: “Are you kidding? I can’t wait to squat again.”

Ummmmmm, what? I never “had” to squat in the first place. I love squatting, and cleaning, and thrustering…. OK, I hate all of them too, but I love them in a weird, twisted way. The love far outweighs the hate since the hate is only in the heat of the moment.

I had back surgery in 2004. My goal was to get healthy again and get back to the things that I loved to do. It worked. I had shoulder surgery in 2013. Yep, my goal was to get back to the things that I loved to do. Yep, it worked.

Surgery is a last resort, but it’s a pathway getting back to being healthy. If it’s necessary, and the outcomes are favorable, then you do it. Then you hurt like hell and do months of physical therapy. We don’t do this to then change our lives or become sedentary. We do it to fix what’s wrong and get back at it!

Just seemed so weird to me that my colleague would think I’d go through this 12 month recover process only to be 1/2 the person I used to be.

No. The goal is to be BETTER than before.

Physical Therapist says….. WTF? among other things (finally some good hip knowledge)

I have been doing a LOT of thinking about my hip instability – or my leg instability. My right knee always buckles in under load. CrossFitters should know it as valgus knee. (good KStarr video on knee problems here).

So how did I do trail running and backcountry fastpacking on tough terrain and years and years of running, etc. when my right leg barely supports itself correctly?

PT said, “well maybe that’s WHY your hip wore down so much. You had the problem and you kept compensating when your knee buckled in by allowing abnormal forces to drive up through your hip. You mentioned before that you used to sprain your right ankle a lot too. Clearly your foot was not landing properly.”

Is it weird that I feel better knowing that I’ve probably had this problem all along?

I’m a big fan of solving problems. I am a bigger fan on really solving the problem instead of just covering it up with a pretty layer of Bondo and paint.

To really solve the problem you need to know what it is. Clearly my hip has been a problem for a long time, but I didn’t realize it. I am not at all excited about the boring-ass exercises I will need to do to get healthy, but my 1RM back squat is going to be one hell of a lot higher (not to mention my clean) when I can actually drive with real power through both of my legs….

This is going to be good.

I’ll tell you later how pissed off PT was that I’m already running….

4 Months to the day – hip surgery





September 12th, 2014, 4 months ago today, I had my hip ‘scoped. Doc cut off a lot of bone that was impinging, snipped out part of my labrum, and pulled over 50 free floating pieces of cartilage out of my hip.

On March 15th I should be able to workout with weights again. The 75 power cleans I did on Thursday and the 50 push presses I did yesterday don’t count… 😉